Five minutes with… Ceramic artist Rachel Wood
This weekend will see the Earth & Fire International Ceramic Fair return to the beautiful setting of Rufford Abbey Country Park in Nottinghamshire.
Ceramicist Rachel Wood from Mansfield, has attended the fair for the last four years, and sees it as a key date in the calendar for the industry. She has missed just three annual events over the last decade.
Rachel first attended the fair in 2000 and she says that the range of collectors who visit Rufford is extremely helpful. She said: “In the early days I was managing my ceramic work part time and working full time as an arts officer with a district council.
“I made the decision about five years ago to go full time thinking that it was now or never and it has proved to be the best decision I could have made.”
Rachel Wood Ceramics (www.rachelwoodceramics.co.uk) was launched and despite the economic climate she is finding the business is going well.
Rachel is based at the Harley Gallery in Worksop on the Welbeck Estate and also runs weekly workshops at Rufford Abbey Craft Centre with members of the public.
Rachel, who specialises in a range of ceramics thrown on the wheel and with more recent ventures into coiling and pinching techniques, has attended Earth and Fire for the last three years. She also tours widely across the UK and Europe and has done so for the last decade.
She said: “I am inspired by the world around me; the colours, shapes and the textures of the landscape…
“I love to explore the rhythm and movement of throwing clay on a wheel, excited by the freshness and spontaneity of the results.
“I want each pot to convey its own spirit and character – to have a pulse and a heartbeat. I want the marks to reflect the journey of exploration and learning in each pot, just as a wrinkle or dimple depicts expression and character in a human face.
“My personal intuitive touch is an integral part of these pots – a dent in the soft clay, a tear, rip, and a finger or handprint in the glaze. It is inspired by the strong need we all have to be touched.
“I am looking forward to Earth and Fire – it has an international reputation and is a fantastic setting here at Rufford.”
‘Earth & Fire’ takes place Friday 22, Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 June at Rufford Abbey Country Park from 10am – 4pm each day. The event is free to attend and includes stalls, talks and demonstrations. Car parking is £5 for the day.